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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: gordonstrong on December 10, 2010, 02:59:42 PM

Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: gordonstrong on December 10, 2010, 02:59:42 PM
Personally, I think most people miss the point that it's *dark* Munich being used.  Big difference in flavor.  When I hear people who get their 100% light Munich malt bocks ripped for "needs more Munich malt", I always tell them to try some dark Munich in the mix.  Makes a big difference.  As does some CaraMunich, IMHO.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: denny on December 10, 2010, 03:44:44 PM
Gordon, what colors do you use to distinguish dark and light Munich?  I've always considered dark to be about 10L.  I tried some 20L Munich in a dunkel once, but it was just downright strange.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 10, 2010, 03:57:32 PM
Gordon makes a good point about the Munich malt. The ones I use is the Munich II from Weyermann. It is listed with 20-25 EBC which is about 8 L. Many other  maltsters sell light Munich malt that has the same color. And their dark Munich is much darker than Weyermann’s Munich II.  Best Malz Dark Munich for example gave me rather poorly fermentable wort when I used it at a rate of close to 100%. This is because it has far fewer enzymes left than Weyermann Munich II.

I’ll be brewing this beer again and I’ll be buying a bag of Weyermann Munich II for this and a few Dunkels.

I don’t think that the aromas that you find in a good Doppelbock come from the malt. At least not directly. And I’m saying that b/c my Doppelbock smells and tastes rather bland when it is young.  It has a good malt backbone and I’m able to pick out the crystal. But there is none of the dark fruit character yet that we all appreciate so much in this beer. That doesn’t come until the beer has aged for 3-5 months. There was a reason why I told Blatz to move the bottle, I sent him, to the back of the fridge for a while.

I don’t know to what extent the aging is part of the production process for Doppelbocks in Germany. Most of the literature I have read focuses on brewing Plisner and other lighter colored beers which are best when they are fresh. Given the economics of storing beer for a long time I have a hard time believing that the beer is stored at the brewery for more than 3 months.

Ron,
If you don’t have the time to do a decoction I would not worry about this. How do you plan to package the beer? Do you bottle or keg?
I’d like you, and possibly others, to evaluate the effect of different packaging and aging temps on the flavor development. What that means is to bottle a few bottles, possibly with and w/o yeast, and store them at different temperatures. E.g:
- bottle(s) w/o yeast kept at lagering temps (28-34F)
- bottle(s) w/ yeast kept at lagering temps (28-34F)
- bottle(s) w/o yeast kept at cellar temps (~50 F)
- bottle(s) w/ yeast kept at cellar temps (~50 F)
- bottle(s) w/o yeast kept at room temps (~68F)
- bottle(s) w/ yeast kept at room temps (~68F)
My experience has been that the presence of yeast and/or lower temps slow the development of the Doppelbock flavor profile. I’ll be setting up such an experiment with the upcoming batch of DB. Maybe I feel adventurous and also try a decoction vs. single infusion experiment.

Kai
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 10, 2010, 03:58:26 PM
Gordon, what colors do you use to distinguish dark and light Munich?  I've always considered dark to be about 10L.  I tried some 20L Munich in a dunkel once, but it was just downright strange.

Dito. I think I'm done using Best Malz Dark Munich for more than 50% in my grist.

Kai
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: denny on December 10, 2010, 04:07:26 PM
Gordon, what colors do you use to distinguish dark and light Munich?  I've always considered dark to be about 10L.  I tried some 20L Munich in a dunkel once, but it was just downright strange.

Dito. I think I'm done using Best Malz Dark Munich for more than 50% in my grist.

Kai

Interesting to hear you say that.  It seems like it's always fermented well for me, IIRC.  we'll see, though.  I have an alt made with about 80% Best dark Munich going right now.  I'll be curious to see what kind if FG I get.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: gordonstrong on December 10, 2010, 04:10:09 PM
It varies by maltster.  Most that I've seen is 10L +/- 2.  Light Munich is around 6L +/- 1.  Sometimes the numbers seem larger if you look at the EBC numbers instead of Lovibond; those numbers are a bit more than 2x Lovibond.  But I'm not picking the malts for their color; I'm concerned about flavor.  I can easily change the color by adding some CaraMunich or by changing the length/intensity of the decoction.

It should go without saying that I'm talking about German maltsters for these products.  There's no way I'd use anything else in a German lager.  You can find non-German "Munich" malts that tend to be darker, but the flavor profile is often wrong.

They aren't always labeled dark Munich.  They might go by Munich II.  Look for Weyermann, Best, etc.  Get some from what's available and do test mashes and find a flavor you like.  I think it's hard to make an Oktoberfest or anything darker without including some.  You can make nice tasting beers, but they seem to lack the malt punch that many people expect.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: denny on December 10, 2010, 04:11:46 PM
Thanks, Gordon.  That confirms what I thought.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: gordonstrong on December 10, 2010, 04:19:58 PM
Addition: I think the maltsters are telling you more info with how they structure their product lines than you realize.  When I say "light Munich", I mean the lightest color Munich malt that a German maltster sells.  When I say "dark Munich", I mean the darker color Munich that a maltster sells.  They aren't making products for their own benefit; they know brewers traditionally use these malts in different proportions in different beers.  So I trust a proper German maltster to develop a good, rich flavor in their dark Munich malt since that's what German brewers would demand.

Don't pick by color.  Pick German first, then select their darker Munich malt, then do some flavor tests to see which one you prefer.  Then stick with it.  You'll have to experiment in what proportions to use in different beers.  I only use a little bit in an Oktoberfest, but can use a lot more in a doppelbock, and even more in a dunkel.

Look at the diastatic power of the grain to tell if it can convert itself (it needs to be above around 40).  Decoction mashing can help with this conversion too, which is something people tend to forget.

If the flavor of a particular Dark Munich is too strong for you, try another maltster.  Or cut it with Pilsner malt. 

It takes a fair amount of trial and error to understand the flavor profile of the products you use, and then be able to visualize their contributions in different proportions in your finished beers.  That's why I advocate using a limited number of malts and knowing them well.  "Malts" means a specific malt from a specific maltster, not types of malt.  Even with a known product, you'll see batch-to-batch and year-to-year variability.  It's an agricultural product, so that's expected.  Hopefully, maltsters can adjust their processes to give you consistency, but you have to allow for some differences.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: gordonstrong on December 10, 2010, 04:24:44 PM
I'm keeping an open mind on some of the various malts out there because I haven't tried them all.

But I agree with Kai on Weyermann Munich II as being a solid product.  That's what I tend to use.

Try some in darker malty Belgian styles too, like a dubbel, a dark strong, or a brown biere de garde.
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 10, 2010, 04:44:48 PM
Interesting to hear you say that.  It seems like it's always fermented well for me, IIRC.  we'll see, though.  I have an alt made with about 80% Best dark Munich going right now.  I'll be curious to see what kind if FG I get.

What are the other 20%. If there is also quite a bit of Pilsner in the grist you may not see what I saw.

Here is a record of two of the beers: http://braukaiser.com/lifetype2/index.php?op=ViewArticle&articleId=131&blogId=1

Both beers used 99% BM Dark Munich. The first one uses a standard mash that I had been using quite often before w/o prolems. The resulting attenuation limit was 71% which is far off the usual attenuation limit that I get for beers with a lot of Weyermman Munich II. For the second one I had to change the mash dramatically to get to an attenuation limit of 76%. With other malts this mash would have gotten me into the lower 80s at least.

I noticed the same on a bock that used 100% of this malt. It wasn’t until later that BM dark Munich is a bit darker than Weyermann Munich II. It also seems to have a more intense taste.

Kai


Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: denny on December 10, 2010, 04:50:14 PM
What are the other 20%. If there is also quite a bit of Pilsner in the grist you may not see what I saw.

The other 20% is Best pils.  I mashed at 148 for 90 min.

Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: bluesman on December 10, 2010, 05:20:50 PM
Ron,
If you don’t have the time to do a decoction I would not worry about this. How do you plan to package the beer? Do you bottle or keg?
I’d like you, and possibly others, to evaluate the effect of different packaging and aging temps on the flavor development. What that means is to bottle a few bottles, possibly with and w/o yeast, and store them at different temperatures. E.g:
- bottle(s) w/o yeast kept at lagering temps (28-34F)
- bottle(s) w/ yeast kept at lagering temps (28-34F)
- bottle(s) w/o yeast kept at cellar temps (~50 F)
- bottle(s) w/ yeast kept at cellar temps (~50 F)
- bottle(s) w/o yeast kept at room temps (~68F)
- bottle(s) w/ yeast kept at room temps (~68F)
My experience has been that the presence of yeast and/or lower temps slow the development of the Doppelbock flavor profile. I’ll be setting up such an experiment with the upcoming batch of DB. Maybe I feel adventurous and also try a decoction vs. single infusion experiment.
Kai

Kai,

I am now concerned about the fermantability that you described in regards to the Best Malz DM as this is what I am using in my grain bill at a rate of 50% along with Vienna. I would be disappointed if the beer ends up on the sweet malty side of the spectrum. Unfortunately, I am brewing the beer tomorrow and my partner has the DMM in his possession.

I will try to bottle some with and without yeast if I can. I am certainly interested in the flavor development as well. At a minimum I could age some in the bottle at varying temps without yeast. We shall see.  ;)
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: James Lorden on December 10, 2010, 05:35:54 PM
Gordon, what colors do you use to distinguish dark and light Munich?  I've always considered dark to be about 10L.  I tried some 20L Munich in a dunkel once, but it was just downright strange.

Would 20L Munich be relatively the same thing as Aromatic Malt?
Title: Using Munich Malt
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 10, 2010, 05:52:00 PM
This has turned into a Munich malt discussion, so I have a question.  What is the opinion on Dusrt Munich malt?  I have a bag ordered for pick up at the club meeting tonight.   The price is hard to beat, and no shipping.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 10, 2010, 06:27:34 PM
I have used only the Durst Dark Munich and so far I rather brew with Weyermann Munich II.

I hear you regarding the price. Weyermann makes some really great malts. Even the appearance of the product in the bag is much better. There tends to be less Ausputz (small bits of husk and rootlets) and I have found quite a number of other grains (weed seeds and even corn kernels) in BM malt that I have not seen in Weyermann malt.

But paying $60 for a bag of Weyermann malt compared to the $30-40 that you pay for BM makes me use quite a bit of BM these days. Another factor is that you can’t buy Weyermann in bulk orders. There are only a few distributors in the US and the one accessible to me is Crosby&Baker which only supplies home brew stores and commercial breweries.

Kai
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: narvin on December 10, 2010, 06:44:53 PM
The only readily available dark Munich that is close to 20L is Durst Dark Munich, and that is a different entity altogether.

 I think what Gordon is saying is that if you're using a light Munich (for example, Weyermann Munich Type I or Best Malz Light Munich), you're only using a 6L Munich.  Try Weyermann Type II or Best Malz Dark Munich to get an 8-10L Munich malt.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: narvin on December 10, 2010, 06:50:06 PM
Gordon, what colors do you use to distinguish dark and light Munich?  I've always considered dark to be about 10L.  I tried some 20L Munich in a dunkel once, but it was just downright strange.

Dito. I think I'm done using Best Malz Dark Munich for more than 50% in my grist.

Kai

Interesting to hear you say that.  It seems like it's always fermented well for me, IIRC.  we'll see, though.  I have an alt made with about 80% Best dark Munich going right now.  I'll be curious to see what kind if FG I get.

I've only used Best Malz Dark Munich up to 80% of the grist, but I got great attenuation in that beer.  As far as I know, it's only 10 L, and I haven't had anything close to strange flavors from that like from using a 20L Munich at that high a percentage.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 10, 2010, 07:05:25 PM
Thanks Kai.  The reason I have the Durst Munich coming is that I can pick it up for less than 2/3 the price of the Weyermann's.

Might have to get some of the Weyermann's next time.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: gordonstrong on December 10, 2010, 07:06:47 PM
I use Durst Munich as my house "light Munich".  I like it, but it's not going to give those super malty flavors that you find in the best imported German lagers.  I use Durst pils, vienna, munich and wheat, so I'm fairly happy with their performance.  I normally throw in a short (10 min) 131F rest to make sure I get good clarity, but that's about it.

I sometimes use Aromatic and Melanoidin malt too, but never for a large part of the grist.  Not the same flavor as dark Munich.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: denny on December 10, 2010, 07:22:55 PM
This has turned into a Munich malt discussion, so I have a question.  What is the opinion on Dusrt Munich malt?  I have a bag ordered for pick up at the club meeting tonight.   The price is hard to beat, and no shipping.

I think it's very good.  I switched to Best Munich due to a slight preference for the flavor.  To date, I haven't noticed the fermentability issues Kai mentions, but I may have just jinxed myself!  I used Weyermann pils and Munich for many years, but found I prefer the flavor of both Durst and Best to Weyermann.  YMMV.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: johnf on December 10, 2010, 07:52:21 PM
I think Kai's fermentability issues were ostensibly due to an enzymatically weak mash so you wouldn't expect to see the issues in a beer using a portion of it especially if the rest is something enzymatically rich like pilsner.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: jaybeerman on December 10, 2010, 08:21:31 PM
I have a hard time getting durst but have access to Franco-Belges and Weyermann.  I've been using the Franco dark munich lately and really like the flavor, no issues using 50%.  It's usually about 11.5L but this last batch is about 14L.  just thought i'd thow that in there.  cheers
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 10, 2010, 10:00:23 PM
I used the FB light Munich this year and didn't care much about the flavor when used as 100% of the grist. I thought it was way too toasty. It aged out after a while but I never really liked these beers as much as I liked others. But I can't compare with a 100% Weyermann Munich I or BM light Munich beer.

Kai
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: a10t2 on December 11, 2010, 12:55:58 AM
The ones I use is the Munich II from Weyermann. It is listed with 20-25 EBC which is about 8 L. Many other  maltsters sell light Munich malt that has the same color.

Wouldn't 20-25 EBC be ~10-12 L? That would be more typical for dark Munich. Light Munich seems to be in the 6-9 L range.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: tom on December 11, 2010, 05:21:03 AM
All of the maltsters have different light and dark Munich malts. I keep trying to get folks to post the maltster and L so we can all be on the same page.
Brew on
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: beveragebob on December 11, 2010, 07:39:58 AM
I've had pretty good luck with  Gambrinus products. They make an 9L and a 30L Munich that is quite consistent. I absolutely love their Honey Malt used in small percentages on some styles.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: jaybeerman on December 13, 2010, 11:50:00 PM
I used the FB light Munich this year and didn't care much about the flavor when used as 100% of the grist. I thought it was way too toasty. It aged out after a while but I never really liked these beers as much as I liked others. But I can't compare with a 100% Weyermann Munich I or BM light Munich beer.

Kai

ok I will have to give the BM light munich a try. looks like they also have a 10-12L dark munich, do you have any experience with it?
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: blatz on December 14, 2010, 01:05:06 AM
I used the FB light Munich this year and didn't care much about the flavor when used as 100% of the grist. I thought it was way too toasty. It aged out after a while but I never really liked these beers as much as I liked others. But I can't compare with a 100% Weyermann Munich I or BM light Munich beer.

Kai

ok I will have to give the BM light munich a try. looks like they also have a 10-12L dark munich, do you have any experience with it?

ummm...check the first page of this thread  ;)

FWIW, I am huge Best Malz fan and typically prefer that over anything else, but I think Weyermann takes the cake on Dark Munich.  More research is needed.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 14, 2010, 02:26:59 AM
ok I will have to give the BM light munich a try. looks like they also have a 10-12L dark munich, do you have any experience with it?

No I don't and probably won't for a while. I just ordered myself a bag of Weyermann Munich II. Looks like the price went down. It's "just" $56 now. The price for Weyermann used to be in the 60s.

Kai
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: bluesman on December 14, 2010, 02:34:06 AM
No I don't and probably won't for a while. I just ordered myself a bag of Weyermann Munich II. Looks like the price went down. It's "just" $56 now. The price for Weyermann used to be in the 60s.
Kai

Where did you order it from. That sounds like a good price. I'm thinking about ordering a bag as well.
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 14, 2010, 02:42:18 AM
Where did you order it from. That sounds like a good price. I'm thinking about ordering a bag as well.

I have to order it through my LHBS which gets it from Crosby&Baker. I'm not sure if they distribute to Delaware HBSs.

Kai
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: blatz on December 14, 2010, 03:03:46 AM
ok I will have to give the BM light munich a try. looks like they also have a 10-12L dark munich, do you have any experience with it?

No I don't and probably won't for a while. I just ordered myself a bag of Weyermann Munich II. Looks like the price went down. It's "just" $56 now. The price for Weyermann used to be in the 60s.

Kai

Kai - how can you say that when a few posts before you say you're about done with best dark Munich ?

Confused :-[
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: Kaiser on December 14, 2010, 03:33:24 AM
ok I will have to give the BM light munich a try. looks like they also have a 10-12L dark munich, do you have any experience with it?

No I don't and probably won't for a while. I just ordered myself a bag of Weyermann Munich II. Looks like the price went down. It's "just" $56 now. The price for Weyermann used to be in the 60s.

Kai

Kai - how can you say that when a few posts before you say you're about done with best dark Munich ?

Confused :-[

I read jaybeermanns comment too fast and assumed that he would have seen my comment about the BM Dark Munich in the beginning of this thread. Yes, I do have experience with this malt and I didn't like it. However, this is just the opinion of one brewer and other may have had better experiences or used it in a way that worked better for their brewing.

Kai
Title: Re: Using Munich Malt
Post by: jaybeerman on December 14, 2010, 03:46:59 AM
I read jaybeermanns comment too fast and assumed that he would have seen my comment about the BM Dark Munich in the beginning of this thread. Yes, I do have experience with this malt and I didn't like it. However, this is just the opinion of one brewer and other may have had better experiences or used it in a way that worked better for their brewing.
Kai

ummm...check the first page of this thread  ;)

Blatz,

Hey, that was at least three days and a whole page ago, I seriously hope you don't expect me to remember things that far back.  ;D

Maybe I need to try weyermann dark again and best light munich for the first time. Thanks blatz and kai